Breweries Open Joint Facility

Owners of Borderlands Brewery realized they needed more production space quite by accident.

President, co-owner, and co-founder Mike Mallozzi said he had ordered a 40-barrel brite tank. To make sure the floor would be stable enough to support the tank, he ordered an engineering assessment. Mallozzi found out that not only could the floor not withstand the extra weight of another brite, but it was already overloaded with equipment as it was.

Around the same time, Sentinel Peak Brewing Company announced that it had found a new production site. Sentinel has statewide distribution of cans and kegs, but it wasn’t able to meet demand in its current brewpub facility.

“We have recently entered into talks for a very large grocery store account and need to produce quite a bit more product,” said Jeremy Hilderbrand, co-owner of Sentinel Peak Brewing Company.

Mallozzi said he had a good relationship with Sentinel, so he called and asked if Sentinel wanted to use the production facility jointly.

And so Voltron Brewing Company was born.

Mallozzi said Borderlands is 200 bbls above where it was at this time last year. Sentinel produced 1,500 bbls previously, and with Voltron, it’s at 3,600.

“Voltron gave us room to purchase the larger brew system, more fermenters, and cooperage — plus storage — that we needed,” said Hilderbrand, adding that Sentinel is looking at buying a canning line.

Voltron consists of two separate breweries, running operations under one roof.

“With the exception of a few key pieces of equipment (glycol chiller and walk-in) each business handles its own brewing,” Hilderbrand said. “We do, however, bounce thoughts, ideas, and techniques off each other. The relationship of the brewers of both companies is very good and we use each others’ knowledge to improve the end product.”

Opening another production facility was a financial challenge that Mallozzi doesn’t think either brewery could have handled on its own.

“It’s hard being a small business owner,” Mallozzi said. “It definitely helps that we’re able to help each other in ways that the other can’t with our different skill sets.”

In an effort to practice sustainability, Voltron buys solar power from a local company, and the owners are currently trying to work out a deal with their landlords to put solar panels on the building.

Voltron opened in the beginning of 2019, and is currently used for production purposes only. However, eventually a taproom will be opened as well, with both breweries’ beers on tap for brand identity.

Hilderbrand hopes it’s ready by the end of the summer, along with a food truck supported by Sentinel’s restaurants.

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